49 thoughts on “Two ways of looking at it”

  1. Bobby has a history of being easy on his players. He tells them they are doing great when they aren’t. He is a very supportive manager during times when the players aren’t doing well (or aren’t happy with themselves). I suspect that is what is happening here.

  2. My guess is that Hampton is just frustrated. TJ rehab is a long, difficult process. I mean, it’s not even March yet and Hampton is already throwing off a mound and trying his breaking stuff. I figure he’ll be up to 4-5 innings by April and hopefully pitching 6+ by the allstar break.

  3. Probably both. Bobby tends to be a pollyanna. If a nuclear weapon went off in Turner Field, Bobby would say at least this gives the rotation more time to rest. But Hampton is probably unduly negative for not having pitched in over a year. It’s too early to worry about it, but let’s face it, Hampton is bound to be a question mark.

  4. I wish him the best as well, but as laid back as he is (or just downright lack of concentration), I don’t know if he’s as much a saviour as they need/think.

    But yeah, the Pirates need some hope too.

    I’d be interested to see how he holds up as an everyday player, seeing lefty pitching.

  5. I heard an interview with Hampton after his outing yesterday. Let’s just say that his comments sound more positive in writing than verbally. He sounded like a totally defeated man. If I hadn’t known who was talking I would have assumed it was an 18-year-old who had just been dumped by his girlfriend.

  6. Hampton is a competitor and has always been hard on himself. Nothing is really up to his standards, I think the most important thing is how he feels today.

  7. C’mon guys, a healthy Mike Hampton is not crucial to the team’s overall success this year. At best, he’ll pitch slightly above league-average baseball. If he’s hurt and can’t pitch, it’s not like the Braves losing John Smoltz. Plug Cormier or Villareal in there and let the bullpen take care of 3-4 innings.

    It’s not like Hampton’s going to win the Cy Young award…

  8. I am sure we will start getting the “Oh Bobby is really impressed with Hamptony’s movement,” lines. Follwed by the Chipper Jones/ Tim Hudson “Wow, Mikey was nasty today. If he comes out with stuff like that this year he might throw 4-5 no-hitters.” Roger McDowell will chime in with “All the catchers are saying he is so tough to catch right now with the movement and on his pitches. In fact, Penay’s hand was completely severed from his arm! McCanny was blown to the backstop like that catcher in ‘Rokie of the Year'” JS will say, “Michaely’s is probablly the biggest competitor in the league. He brings great leader ship to the club ouse along with guys like Jonesy, Smoltzy, Hudsony, Wickmany, and Brian Jordany. We are very excited to have him back.”

    ugh

  9. I think a healthy Mike Hampton is a huge boost, if only to take pressure away from the young kids at the bottom of the rotation. James was good last year, but he needs another pitch. Hitters started sitting on his fastball, cranking way too many balls into the stratosphere on him. I’d rather see him slotted into the #4 starter position, where he can work out the kinks against up-and-comers and winding-downers, rather than more established and reliable starters.

    I’d also like to see Cormier or Davies in the rotation — but not both, at least to start the season. Those two will take their lumps as they develop, and the last thing you want to do with a shiny revamped new bullpen is wear it out early. You don’t restore a vintage Mustang to mint condition, just to enter it in a demolition derby.

    That said, I’m currently on Hampton’s side in this debate. If he says his arm’s not right, his arm’s not right. And as sunny as Cox’s disposition is, he’s still ‘hoping’ to get Hampton up to only five innings by opening day, which won’t help the bullpen, either. I can hear that Mustang revving already.

  10. Matt Harrison could be in there all season and pitch better than Hampton. There, I said it. I’m not worried. All those who are worried, you’re very sensitive people who freak over anything. ;)

  11. Talk is cheap in Spring Training and so I would not draw too many conclusions from either comment. Nonetheless, I think it does underscore the fact that our rotation is pretty fragile…

  12. There’s still a little snow on the ground here, so it’s nice to hear baseball on the radio, even if it has to be the Mets.

    FWIW, Oliver Perez isn’t fooling anybody. Let’s hope that’s a season-long pattern.

  13. Very weird. I’ll be honest: I don’t miss Marcus. (The Maddux quote, though, reminds me how much I still miss him.)

  14. 5-0 vs Tech
    Not bad for a start. Though this is a Tech team against whom every mom n pop store team has put up 10 runs

  15. Agree with you, Stu. I miss Maddux real bad. He’s my all time favourite pitcher. What’s the score b the way? Anyone?

  16. Maddux may be my all-time favorite player. In fact, I DJed a Halloween party about 10 years ago and I went “as Greg Maddux.”

    Braves jersey, Braves cap, glasses—all set.

  17. braves win 5-0. pitching staff cruises (2 h, 1 BB in 9 IP). francoeur doesn’t do much against his former HS rival.

    i wonder if harrison could really be in the mix for a fifth spot? man, our system is going to be absolutely barren without him pitching-wise.

  18. Kyle,

    And why is that a problem? We’ll have all we need for the season in Harrison and the others. Hell, we could still throw Kevin Barry out there.

  19. Nice story about Jonathan Johnson here. Seems like a nice guy, and he’s a devout Christian, for those who care. Maybe he’ll evolve into a slightly better Jason Shiell–nothing wrong with that. Best case scenario, Rudy Seanez.

  20. from DOB…

    Wick really wants to win: Don’t know how serious he was, but the big man, Bob Wickman, was heard this morning promising the team he’d buy everyone big-screen TVs if the Braves won the Grapefruit League title.

  21. I really enjoyed the Johnson article in the local paper. He won’t make the team, but it’s a great story. I’m glad he’s on our 40-man roster for four more weeks.

  22. Already asked. He said Braves Journal doesn’t count. I mean, I feel like I’m a part of the team…

  23. So in the last three years, the Braves have employed the pitchers with the most (Alfonseca) and the fewest fingers in the league.

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